Indonesia seeks to jail Australian teen accused of drug possession

Two Australians are currently on death row in Bali's Kerobokan prison, with six others serving life sentences.

Story highlights

  • The teen, accused of marijuana posession, has been detained since October
  • He was on vacation with his parents in Bali
  • The teen could be sent to rehabilitation instead of jail
  • Indonesia has strict drug laws, with some crimes punishable by death
Indonesian prosecutors on Friday requested a three-month sentence for a 14-year-old Australian boy accused of marijuana possession on the resort island of Bali.
The Australian teen -- whose name has not been released -- also faced two other charges. The more serious charge of drug possession carries a maximum of six years in prison. The least serious charge relates to drug use by minors and takes into account a person's history of drug use. This charge does not hold criminal liability and could send the teen to rehabilitation instead of jail.
Defense lawyers presented their final statements and sought a decision based on the least serious charge.
The teen's lawyer, Mohammad Rifan, said the boy, his parents and his defense team were shocked.
"We are disappointed, we did not expect he will be prosecuted for three months," the lawyer said. "A minor should be rehabilitated or given back to his parents."
The teen has been detained since his October 4 arrest, after allegedly buying 3.6 grams of cannabis off the streets. He was on vacation with his parents in Bali, a popular tourist destination for many Australians.
He was initially detained at a police headquarters but was recently moved to an immigration detention center.
A verdict is expected on November 25. If he is given a jail sentence, he will most likely be put in a juvenile prison, the lawyer said.
Indonesia anti-drugs laws are considered strict. Visitors to the country are warned, upon arrival, that some drug crimes carry a maximum penalty of death.
Still, many have been arrested and convicted for various drug offenses. Two Australians are on death row in Bali's Kerobokan prison. Six other Australians are serving life sentences.